clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2018 NCAA Tournament: There’s No Way To Chart Emotion

Data is useful but it only takes you so far.

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-First Round
Mar 15, 2018; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Duke Blue Devils guard Gary Trent Jr. (2) shoots on the court prior to playing the Iona Gaels in the first round of the 2018 NCAA Tournament at PPG Paints Arena. Duke won 89-67.
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

This article in the Denver Post suggests that Duke has the easiest path to the Final Four and championship and backs it up with data.

That’s pretty cool but data, as useful as it is, can only take you so far.

It certainly can’t measure emotion as UMBC and Nevada have reminded us and Duke has no way to know how emotional Syracuse will be, much elpsdpdd

There’s also a basic element in sport involved here and that’s confidence (or lack of same). There’s no way to quantify that. Syracuse’s zone tends to suck the confidence out of opponents. An imposing shotblocker can control the lane and discourage drives.

Alternatively, a guy like Randolph Childress or JJ Redick can get hot and there’s nothing anyone can do to stop it.

So the data is fun but it’s not a complete answer. It’s just part of it.

If you're going to shop Amazon please start here and help DBR
Check out our October '17 t-shirt! || Drop us a line